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Updated: 2007-10-30

2006 Heritage Festival

by Drew, VE3MAF

The 2006 Heritage Festival ran from Friday August 4th until Monday August 8th. The weather was BEAUTIFUL.
Below you can see part of Heritage Command (Yellow Trailer) and the North Bay Amateur Radio Club mobile tower trailer.
Click on any picture to get an enlargement.

NBARC was again in charge of the communications. This year we used about 70 portables and 3 bases. We ran a communications net of five different frequencies all in the UHF band. We also implemented a brand new computer logging program written specifically for the Heritage Festival by Paul (VA3PC). He used PHP and MSQL. After the first few bugs were worked out it worked very well. It was easy to use and even those operators who would normally run from the computer got used to the program and found it relatively easy to use.
The star performer was the radio log. As you can imagine trying to keep track of 70 portables and who has which one signed out for the day can be quite a challenge. The Radio Logging program made short work of it. Here is Derek (VE3KAA) after a few minutes working with the new program. Notice the big smile!
The Festival itself went off very well with no major incidents. The concerts were a hit and a couple of our operators seemed to disappear when STOMPIN' TOM was on stage. They were only going to stay for a FEW (wink wink nudge nudge) songs but ended up staying for the whole concert. They enjoyed themselves and that is what matters. M&M Meats provided all the vendor meals as a sponsorship donation to the Festival. One meal ticket would get you 2 hotdogs or 2 hamburgers (or one of each), 1 Oktoberfest sausage on a bun or 1 chicken burger. The sausage and chicken burgers were very good from my personal experience.

The Heritage Command Post (our trailer) was well staffed. We have a volunteer who likes to bake. One night she couldn't sleep and the next morning she brought in sticky buns. One of those was my sugar fix for the day but it was almost impossible to not have a second. Thank goodness there were other people to eat them up. The next morning saw butter tarts and apple tarts (STILL WARM!!). Here is Linda and her plate of offerings eight minutes after she arrived (notice what is missing already)....
Here are Ed and Candy (VE3SCN) at the occurrence postions. That look of intense concentration on Candy's face is because she is actually entering an event on the computer! Way to go Candy!
This is what happens when Keeling (VE3XKB) gets a train line-up. He immediately heads for a computer to ensure it is entered properly.(This is actually his "what are you doing there with that camera" look!)
Drew (VE3MAF), Howard (VE3GMG) and Jim (VE3KAN) are looking over Paul's program and having a good chuckle at what impossible things they want added next. Drew provided up to date and accurate weather prognosticating for the entire weekend. He did such a good job, he is invited back next year.
Everyone had a good time even through the long hours. We were all home by 2000 on Monday night for a well deserved sleep.
Speaking of good times, how many security people does it take to keep the mini-train safe? Also how many radios does it take our Section leader to keep in touch? Check out the answers below...
The VERY Secure Mini-Train.
OK, the security crew had a few minutes at a shift change meeting, so they decided to check out the Mini-Train. There is no truth to the rumour that they are ALL kids at heart.
Shawn (our Heritage Command Section Leader and Management Committee liaison), showing how to make the most effective use of a 5 frequency network. No wonder Yvan (Security Leader) was concerned when Shawn was signing out radios on his behalf
Shawn, your radio is too loud.
Radio, what radio?

And finally, below is one of our tech wizards (Keeling, VE3XKB) with a fine assortment of routers, switches, hubs, knobs, buttons, cables, wires, doo-dads, UPS's, servers, wifi's, and whatever else it takes to make the magic happen.

OOPS - forgot about the hammers and thing-a-ma-whatzits.

Til next year. '73 Drew (VE3MAF)